SURF

Christina Lin

Induction and confirmation of an EMT spectrum in SKOV-3 cells with TGF- & thrombin

Ovarian cancer is one of the most difficult to study because of its extreme heterogeneity due to its increased likelihood of undergoing epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT), a progression towards malignancy. Cells undergoing EMT not only seem to evade detection, but also are resistant to chemotherapeutic drugs. I propose to evaluate the relative gene expression levels of selected epithelial and mesenchymal markers throughout phases of EMT. I will induce EMT in ovarian epithelial cells, SKOV-3, through introduction of either transforming growth factor (TGF-) or thrombin. The morphing phenotype can be evaluated via expression of specific markers, including E-cadherin, pan-cytokeratin, and vimentin. I will sort via expression levels of various genes, utilizing quantitative real time polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR) to quantify gene expression levels specific to ovarian cancer. With more comprehensive understanding of ovarian cancer cells changing phenotypically and genotypically, my work potentially allows for earlier diagnosis, improved treatments, and new therapies.

Message to Sponsor

I am greatly honored and grateful for being selected as a 2014 SURF/Rose Hills Independent Fellow. My gratitude extends to those who have made it possible for me to devote an entire summer to focus on researching ovarian cancer cells. I ecstatically thank the Rose Hills Foundation and my mentors, Lydia Sohn and Eric Jabart, for encouraging me to pursue this opportunity and training for my proposed project. This opportunity has fueled my interest in research and influenced me in pursuing oncology in my future.
  • Major: Chemical Biology, Molecular & Cell Biology
  • Sponsor: SURF Rose Hills fellow
  • Mentor: Lydia Sohn, Mechanical Engineering